Top 9 Things to Consider About Moving to Denia, Spain
by Amalia Maloney del Riego of Move to Traveling
When I told people that Eric and I were moving to Denia, many of them responded with that cute ‘huh?’ dog look (you know, the tilt of the head and slightly open mouth). The less frequented, Mediterranean beach town in Spain had not been on our radar long. Yet it checked all the boxes on our wishlist, and some we didn’t know we had.
Fast forward six years to now, and Eric and I are even more in love with Denia. It’s hard for us to not rave about it and we’re not the only foreigners who have made it home. Of course, not everyone has the same taste we have (fortunately). We know plenty of people who have checked it out and decided that Denia was not the best fit for them. So if you’re curious about Denia, or considering living in Spain, here are nine important things to help you determine if moving to Denia is for you.
Moving to Denia Consideration #1: The Spanish & Valencian Cultures
The Spanish lifestyle is alive and well in Denia. Local shops close for siesta, lunch is the biggest meal of the day, and people don’t eat dinner until after 9pm. Some restaurants don’t even open until 8pm! And yes, people still take siestas.
Denia also has the Valencia culture, which has its own cuisine, festivals, and language. This does mean that many things, like street signs and events, are in two languages, Castilian Spanish and Valenciano. Some things have entirely different names in either language, which takes some getting used to when navigating the roads.
Moving to Denia Consideration #2: The Foreign Influence
We love the authentic, local cultures here and that it’s not over developed by foreigners like a lot of the popular areas along Spain’s Mediterranean coasts. At the same time, there is also a great foreign community and the town is active year-round, unlike some smaller beach towns that are dead in the winter months. The local Spaniards and Valencians here are also very friendly.
Within Denia itself there are very few urbanizations or communities that are entirely foreign (at least that we know of). There is the La Sella Golf Course and community of homes which is just outside of Denia and to the back of Montgo (so no sea views). From what we understand, a lot of foreigners live in that area. It’s located in between the teeny tiny villages of La Xara and Jesus Pobre, which has some charming aspects if you’re looking for more rural, quiet living that is not a far drive from the coast and town of Denia.
Moving to Denia Consideration #3: The Quality of Life
It can also be very affordable in Denia, from housing to food, especially compared to the US, which is where we came from. What you get for your money is usually better quality, especially regarding the fresh food and dining out.
Speaking of dining out, Denia is designated a UNESCO City of Gastronomy. Yes, that’s a thing! There are a lot of restaurants here, from casual, hole in the wall joints to Michelin Star establishments. More vegan options are showing up as well. Keep in mind though that the town doesn’t have the vast array of different cuisines that bigger cities are going to have.
If you’re considering moving to Denia for a Mediterranean lifestyle with great food and culture, then it can be a great fit for you.
Moving to Denia Consideration #4: The Cost of Living
In general, the cost of living in Denia can be quite affordable for many expats. For those of us who have been here for some years, we are noticing that prices are going up all across the board. Groceries and eating out is a bit more. For example, the Ruta de la Tapa (imagine a bar hopping event twice a year but classier and with a drink and tapa) is now 4€ per serving versus the 2.50€ it was in 2015 and then 3€ for some years after. Believe it or not, 4€ is high for a drink and tapa, by most Spain standards.
Then there’s real estate in Denia. Prices of both buying and renting properties in Denia are rising post-pandemic. Our Denia real estate expert Paul Millward of Grupo Garcia just told us “It’s a bit freaky the market at the moment. Prices are going up a lot and there is little for sale.” Keep in mind that this aspect of moving to Denia can still be less expensive than most other countries and the rest of Europe. You can click here for some statistics on properties in Denia.
Fortunately, Bargain Homes Abroad can keep you informed of great Denia properties that could be a fantastic deal for you.
Moving to Denia Consideration #5: The Nature
If you’re considering moving to Denia, we hope you like the beach. I mean, come on - it’s right on the Mediterranean! Denia has three beaches, two of which are sandy and one rocky. The long, sandy stretch of Las Marinas starts right in the north eastern part of town. At the other side of town is the quaint sandy bay of Marineta Cassiana. Then we have our personal favorite, the Las Rotas rocky stretch of pebble beaches and coves, which is fantastic for snorkeling.
Denia also has the mountain Montgo along its south western side. Just inland are ranges and ranges of mountains as well, so there are plenty of wonderful hikes to enjoy. It is also quite green around here (although not as green as northern Spain). The further south you go down the coast, the drier it gets.
If you like to be outdoors, it doesn’t take long at all to enjoy yourself in Denia. There is plenty of countryside and coast line to enjoy for walks and bike rides. If you’re more of a city person, then moving to Denia may not be for you, for this and other reasons that we get into next.
Moving to Denia Consideration #6: The Size
When it comes to size, Denia can be a Goldie Locks town. If you end up moving to Denia, it will be because you found it to be not too big and not too small, but just right. It is true though that the population has grown for the past three consecutive years. As of when this was written, the population in Denia was said to be 46,188 people made up of 111 various nationalities.
Could Denia be too small of a town for you? We’ve met people who considered moving to Denia but decided that they’re more city people. One such couple still love to visit Denia but instead settled nearby in the center of Valencia city and still love it there.
Moving to Denia Consideration #7: The Location
The city of Valencia is just over an hour drive from Denia (about 105 km). This also provides one of the closest international airports and the wonderfully fast Ave trains to Madrid, Barcelona, and other parts of Spain.
What’s also great is that the city of Alicante is about the same distance in the other direction, about 90 km southwest along the coast. Alicante also has an international airport and trains that connect with other parts of Spain.
Let’s not forget that Denia is also the headquarters of the Balearia ferry company which goes various times a day to the beautiful islands of Ibiza, Formentera, and the other Balearic Islands.
Moving to Denia Consideration #8: The Public Transportation
When it comes to public transportation, Denia still has room to improve. Walking and cycling in town is very convenient, but the only bus for getting around town goes up and down the waterfront, covering the Last Marinas and Las Rotas beaches. There are buses to and from Valencia and Alicante, as well as some to the nearby smaller towns along the coast. However, there is no longer a non-stop public bus to either airport. For exploring the mountains inland, you need a car.
Denia does have a local, slow train that goes south along the coast to Alicante with a train switch in Benidorm. But, before you get excited, the stretch from Denia to Calpe has not been running for five years now. The word on the street is that it will be running again in 2023.
Moving to Denia Consideration #9: The Weather
Last but not least, make sure that you have realistic expectations about the weather in Denia. When people first think of moving to Denia it can be easy to assume it’s going to be perfectly warm all year-round. Well, sorry to disappoint but that is not the case.
The weather is still lovely and Denia gets a lot of sunshine year-round. The months of June, July and September are ideal for being outdoors and in the sea.
The thing to keep in mind is that in July it starts to get quite hot and August tends to be the hottest month of the year. It’s that muggy, humid kind of hot. This is a great time to escape to the north of Spain to see more of this beautiful country. Or at least make sure that your place in Denia has air conditioning.
Then there are the winter months. Starting in November and into the beginning of May it gets chilly. Ok, honestly, we think it gets downright cold. But as cold as other places further north? Thankfully, no. What makes it seem really cold at times is the humidity and dampness from being right on the sea. There can still be surprisingly warm days and lots of sunshine, but make sure to wear layers. Essentially, will you need a winter coat here? Yes, we think so, and we moved here from Colorado.
A Next Step for Moving to Denia
Are you still liking the idea of moving to Denia? If the answer is yes, then one of the best things you can do is a scouting trip to Denia. I recommend visiting for at least one week. To enjoy great weather and get a local feel for the town, visit in September, October, May, or June.
There’s a lot that goes into any trip, especially when you’re considering a big move like this. As a Travel Consultant, I’m happy to be of help. I can custom plan your scouting trip with insider intel to aid you and alleviate stresses so you can enjoyably explore the possibility of moving to Denia.
Along with travel planning, I love to connect with people on our website, MoveToTraveling.com, where we share more helpful information about living in Denia and Spain.
Who knows, maybe we’ll meet in Denia one day!
Amalia loves living in Spain and traveling worldwide. Taking time to enjoy places and the local culture by ‘eating and drinking’ her way around and meeting the people, is her idea of a great time. As a Travel Consultant, she specializes in custom trips in Spain and Europe. You can learn more and connect with her at MoveToTraveling.com.
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